Most Important Things to Know For a Motorcycling n00b.

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by MotoMusicMark, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. insomnia

    insomnia Been here awhile

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    comfort is a lot more fun than speed and coolness I have learnt after a lot of years on the road . its raining pretty heavy and its dark and getting cold and you have a long way to get home some little luxury things like a full face helmet with a visor is nice you can do 90 mph in the rain not as good with a jet helmet a decent two piece water proof over suit good water proof boots and gloves make the world of difference ride 30 miles in just denim jeans and leather jacket you will be cold and miserable I prefer leathers to textile myself it's more breathable in the hot weather get them big enough to fit fleece warming layers under also base layers and good thermal socks for the cold . a practical bike with a top case and panniers a tank bag to carry all your essentials is nice so is sat nav a touring wind screen touring fareing is even better and hang guards or muffs and comfortable seat make things easier a centre stand is nice too I really wouldn't bother with a bike without one again .

    the best money you can spend starting out is on setting yourself up with decent helmet and clothing and at least a top case to securely carry your wets security lock road map and other stuff you will need o a daily basis and a good selection of tools at home study this Haynes manuals it give's a good guide on what you need to get started and a work shop manual for your bike to do your own repairs and maintenance . its better to buy a cheaper bike for a start but not a wreck just an older maybe less desirable model in good order well shod with fresh tyres and in no need of repair but remember the day you buy is the day you sell you don't want something too unfashionable that you will end up stuck with and set yourself up so your ready for all kinds of weather and ready to take change parts as the wear out . ask people who know their shit whats a good bike or you could just read the 1000 threads on hear no need to start your own start learning how to do the different jobs on your machine through youtube videos and reading the forums . take your time and ride smart and safe life is long but death is for eternity . no point in thinking your Kenny Roberts ( world champion road racer ) when you can only ride a bike like Kenny Rodgers ( country singer ) you will become unstuck maybe even fuck up your bike and soil your pants and get a little road rash . can Kenny Rodgers even ride a bike ?
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  2. mossycreek

    mossycreek Been here awhile

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    Got to love charts?????
    (1) I personally agree with covering your brakes all availible. I think it prepares your mind and body to be thinking about the situation ahead that will in many circumstances alone prevent you from panic braking. Your are already in a more ready body position and frame of mind to brake hard if needed. I think this is probably the most important part of covering your brakes.
    (2) Most people don't practice back brake control. You must learn to not lock it up unless intended. I still today play with my bikes in my yard wether it be street, dirt or dual sport. Grass is a good way to learn to manage your back brake. keep in mind HAZARD. If you start sliding your rear and it pitches to one side or the other, if you let off the brake during the slide (HIGH SIDE most definetly can occur) they hurt. That is often what causes the high side not the slide itself.
    (3) Chart application perfect conditions, straight line braking on a dry hard surface if I was to bet. There is no doubt that you have way more of your front braking power available in those conditions. As conditions become less favorable this chart does not apply as accuratelly. If you begin to venture off paved dry roads or begin riding in all weather. The slicker things become the more things need to transition to more balanced braking to prevent front from sliding and or washing out. With less available traction there will be less braking force capable of being applied to the front to prevent loss of control, less weight is being transfered from the back. On a street bike perfect condition pavement you can often apply so much front brake you can completely unload the back tire. Back tire has 0 effect. Now go to damp grass same bike (slick area at stop sign), I bet you can achieve 40% or better of available braking traction on the rear while maintaining control.
    (4) Remember as a new person learn all your controls and how to (Control them) if back brakes didn't matter they would not be on the bike. That wont keep you from making mistakes or even crashing but will definetly tilt things in your favor. Practice some braking on grass even if its a street bike. Don't let the first time you need to really control your braking be the on the road. My first really hard get off was (slick spot at a stop sign my front wheel washed and high sided me under my 500lb bike over 30 years ago). Less than a years worth of experience and was told to never use back brake it was useless. Traction went from chart as taught to no chart in 3 feet! Little more back and a little less front might have been handy. LOL
  3. MauiCowie

    MauiCowie Long timer

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    18 degrees

    One problem new riders have is overcoming natural instincts that are counterproductive to riding well. One of them is a natural resistance to leaning past a certain point. For whatever reason (evolution or God, take your pick) the human brain does not like leaning past about 18 degrees and tends to kind of freak out when you try to lean further than that. At least for me, once I learned this and was able to consciously work my way through it while practicing turns I was able to more comfortably lean farther with the bike and turn much better.
  4. Norty01

    Norty01 Occupant

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  5. MauiCowie

    MauiCowie Long timer

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    It's not my chart. It's just something I found when Googling about rear braking on motorcycles.

    I've never had a problem with locking up the rear. The first time it happened to me was early in my riding career when "panic braking" when a car slowed suddenly in front of me on the freeway. When it locked up the rear end slid out to one side a bit but I instinctively released it and righted the bike. It all seemed very natural to me but I suspect that's because when I was a young boy we used to spend hours seeing who could lay the longest patch locking up the rear end of a Stingray bicycle. Granted the weight is radically different but the physics are essentially the same in that if you let the rear slide out too far and then it hooks up you will highside or if you keep the brake applied for too long when it goes to the side you will lowside.
  6. Norty01

    Norty01 Occupant

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    Gotta admit, most of us that rode "stingray's" did draw upon our "skid mark" experience to apply to motorcycling. And, you're right, it does have similar physics. Not exact physics, but similar.

    Nowa days, "skid mark" experience means something a little different...:uhoh
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  7. Huzband

    Huzband Team Dirt

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    That's why we keep our noggin perpendicular to the road.
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  8. Sal Pairadice

    Sal Pairadice Captain Obvious

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    Everyone should practice panic stops.

    I don't have ABS... I practice panic braking first few rides in the spring. I brake as hard as I can without locking up the rear, then when I am down to about 10 mph, I lock the rear. Its part of my spring warmups. I need to find the feel of impending lockup. Also need to develop the muscle memory to " save bandwidth" when it counts. Once in a while coming into a stop sign at slow speed I'll just lock the rear for a sec. Throughout the year I do some hard braking , and a lot of trail braking for the same reason. You want to get the feel of the rear brake when all the weight is forward, the forks are compressed and the rear is unloaded.

    I also did the Stingray bicycle braking as a kid. For endless hours and days. And later on dirt bikes on trails.
    sharps5090 and Huzband like this.
  9. Norty01

    Norty01 Occupant

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    Absolutely true!

    Just bear in mind that "Faster does NOT equal better."
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  10. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity Super Supporter

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    4WD does not make you a better driver:lol3
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  11. davenowherejones

    davenowherejones short old guy

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    Does too
  12. Eatmore Mudd

    Eatmore Mudd Mischief on wheels.

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    Probably why some pilots make excellent riders and some rider make scary pilots. Just a thought.
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  13. Jetlag Jon

    Jetlag Jon Been here awhile

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    Anyone on four wheeels is just about to do something really stupid. If you start with that premise you are less likely to be surprised.
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  14. Sal Pairadice

    Sal Pairadice Captain Obvious

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    Can you explain that in more detail? Just curious.....I'm sort of, but not really, a pilot...
  15. sharps5090

    sharps5090 Adventurer

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    Well that makes two of us, because I don't care what you think about these kinds of things either. LOL
    I do know, that at 61 I can still ride a motorcycle, bicycle, snowmachine, fly a plane, and do just about anything I want to do.
    My life is far from over. I would bet that when you are getting closer to 55 you may change your mind!
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  16. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity Super Supporter

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    At 51 I see no signs of slowing down as long as I stay healthy.
  17. davenowherejones

    davenowherejones short old guy

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    But that 55th birthday is a killer, man.

    I was riding dual sports and then 55, bam!

    Now I ride a Honda Forza 300 maxi-scooter down the gravel roads.
  18. skibum69

    skibum69 slave to gravity Super Supporter

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    Yeah thanks, at 50 I started feeling a few more quirks from a lifetime of working and playing hard but nothing that keeps me from still doing the things I love. Skiing, snowboarding, surfing, bicycles, motorcycles and a lot of beer.:D
  19. P 0 P E Y E

    P 0 P E Y E Bald rider Supporter

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    Ship....I am pushing sixty. I just went out and bought a new 300 TPI. (Never too old to BRAAAAAAP) I am always learning each and every ride...Got me first bike in '72 but been riding since '67...I still suck at it.

    Compared to SIR JARVAS, MR. WEBB, Mr. COLEMAN, GuRU BARRY and for that matter all AMA- A, B and Cs...I outright stink. I've accepted the fact that I am a perpetual N00B in compared to all others...BIG WHOOP

    As with all sporting activities, There's always going to be people that have that natural ability to excel beyond your personal comprehension. There a still a few people that are actually lower on the bell curve of Riding skills too...I think 5 people last time I checked.

    We're only competing against ourselves. As long as I recognize my limited skillset, continue to ride on the edge of my comfort zone and grow my skills each time I ride.....I PITCH A TENT.

    Yes, It hurts...Yes it takes longer to heal...I still can't go thru a day with out thinking about riding.
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  20. Bogfarth

    Bogfarth Fridge Magnet Safety Tester

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    Slow bikes ridden fast are a mountain of fun. Fast bikes ridden slow are a form of torture. As a worldly-wise traveler once posted in Ride Reports: "It takes about 15hp to go around the world. The rest is wheel spin."

    Beware the wind. I was reminded of this today when on the Strom crossing a bridge with winds 20-25 gusting to 40. In less than half a mile, the wind helped me execute three involuntary lane changes. I crossed this bridge with my hazards on. Other drivers proved most polite and gave me quite the berth.

    Talk to everyone who rides. Listen to what they say. Lessons can be found in each encounter. SQUIDs, 1% types, goons, every day folk, retired tourers; they all have experience good and bad.

    Ride Like a Pro or motogymkhana will do wonders for one's low-speed ability. Get a 50' measuring tape, a dozen tennis balls (cut in half) and an empty parking lot. Friends make it more fun.

    New to all this? Kinda nervous about riding in traffic? Have a 5am breakfast on Sunday and be out the door by 6am. Ride for two hours on empty roads. Repeat until you feel confident.
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